Shooters always get plenty of coverage at E3 and this year has been no different. Destiny, Call of Duty, and Halo have all gotten plenty of stage time, but the Nintendo digital presentation is one place we didn’t necessarily expect to see an emphasis on the competitive online shooter genre.

Nintendo attempts to reinvent the shooter genre with colorful, bright new IP Splatoon. The four-on-four multiplayer game puts players in control of a kid who has the ability to transform back and forth into a squid. Each character type (human and squid) has a different set of abilities that help players splatter ink across the battleground to paint over more territory than the opponents.

Nintendo plans to release Splatoon for the Wii U in the first half of 2015. The colorful inkguns make for a pretty silly-looking and aesthetically pleasing multiplayer map, but all that ink actually leads the introduction of some pretty unique multiplayer strategies and gameplay components.

Splatoon Gameplay Footage

Human players start off by running around and forging a path of messy ink. Once the ground is covered, players who have morphed into squids are then able to swim through the colorful paths to refill their guns and get a speed bonus. Swimming through opponent’s ink isn’t possible, so teams need to work together to make a path for their partners. To secure victory, your team must capture more than half the map by claiming it with ink.

In one of the better uses of the Wii U Gamepad that we’ve seen, Splatoon players are able to get a real-time look at the map by glancing down at the controller. The mini-map shows where ink is splattering, so players can use the information to decide where to take the fight next. To reduce travel time, you will also be able to simply click a friendly player on the map and your character will rocket across the screen towards them.

The main concern about the game is going to be the controls. Traditionally, shooters work best with tight, accurate controls, but Splatoon relies on the Gamepad’s gyro sensor to aim or look around. The unique mechanic could end up being a lot of fun, but it’s possible that the lack of accuracy will be a turn off for many shooter fans.

Are you looking forward to Splatoon’s new spin on the shooter genre or does the Gamepad use seem a bit gimmicky to you? Let us know in the comments.

Game Rant E3 2014 Live Coverage


Splatoon is coming to the Wii U in the first half of 2015.

Follow Denny on Twitter @The_DFC.